Blog: Thanksgiving Day football practice 'neat time' for Pine Creek, Loveland

Pink Creek running back, D'andre Toliver, 2, runs for a short gain in the first half against the Wheat Ridge Farmers in the playoff matchup at District 20 stadium in Colorado Springs, Colorado on Saturday, November 21, 2015. Photo by Daniel Owen.

For those of us who love sports, Thanksgiving definitely means football.

That might mean even more to the last few remaining teams in the high school football playoffs.

On Thanksgiving, Pine Creek and Loveland players will take to the practice fields in the morning with one set of family members before heading off for the afternoon with another set.

"It's just exciting to be playing right now," Loveland coach Wayne McGinn said. "It's exciting to go to practice today, tomorrow and the next day. There are only four (4A) teams that get to do that.

"It's kind of like we're a family. So we're going to be together with that family and then our immediate family afterwards."

No. 13 Loveland (7-5) hosts No. 1 Pine Creek (12-0) on Saturday at 1 p.m. at Ray Patterson Stadium in Loveland in the Class 4A state semifinals. The winner will take on the winner between No. 2 Longmont and No. 3 Windsor.

The Eagles, the two-time defending champs, are no different. They'll be practicing all three days too, and like Loveland will be on the field in the morning before celebrating the national holiday in the afternoon.

For the Eagles, Thanksgiving Day practice presents an opportunity for some family members they might not get the rest of the season.

"We have half a dozen or more (former players) come out on Thursday and quite a few parents will," Pine Creek coach Todd Miller said. "They (the parents) don't get to see the kids practice during the year, just games, most of them. It's kind of a neat time."

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